Family Travel: Myrtle Beach, SC
By Carissa Hickok
Myrtle Beach is popular with people of all ages, though it is an especially popular spring and summer break destination. This is a spot which hosts over 14 million visitors each year. Myrtle Beach is located on the eastern coast of South Carolina, close to the North Carolina/South Carolina border. To get to this great destination, you can either fly to Myrtle Beach International Airport or drive. The closest interstates to Myrtle Beach are I-95 and I-26 but they do not directly lead to Myrtle Beach. You will have to exit and head onto a state highway such as US 76. If you are driving along the Atlantic coast, US 17 will take you directly to where you want to go.
Myrtle Beach has many options ranging from motels and hotels to grand vacation homes. The prices for accommodations vary between peak and off-peak season. If you decide to visit Myrtle Beach during the cooler months, you are certain to find steep discounts on lodging.
With over 60 miles of sand along the Atlantic Ocean, there is no shortage of beach. The Myrtle Beach Boardwalk covers 1.2 miles along the coast. Myrtle Beach’s boardwalk was ranked #2 and #3 boardwalk in the United States in 2010 by Travel and Leisure and the National Geographic respectively. The boardwalk is lined with restaurants, small shops, and bars. You can also take a stroll on the piers, which allow you to walk out into the ocean. The piers are also perfect places for fishing.
If you are looking for something other than beach, Myrtle Beach offers a myriad of options. Multiple malls, Tanger outlets, and a shopping complex are spread out in the area as well as amusement parks, water parks, mini golf and go karts, museums, aquariums, and theaters, just to name a few. The Family Kingdom Amusement park has over 35 rides and sure to entertain children of all ages. There are outdoor adventure parks with climbing walls and zip lining among other activities. There is a wildlife preserve that host some of the Big Cats. If you prefer to see animals in the ocean, take a dolphin cruise or go deep sea fishing. Explore the ocean on a jet-ski, sailboat, banana boat, kayak, or parasail. Or take to the sky with a helicopter ride to make your vacation even more memorable.
The Myrtle Beach SkyWheel opened in 2011. The structure stands at 187 feet tall and is one of the tallest Ferris wheels in the United States. Each of the gondolas is temperature controlled and glass enclosed so even if it is cold outside, you can still enjoy the warmth of the gondola inside.
Myrtle Beach is the perfect place for a family vacation. Plan ahead, especially if you are planning to visit during the spring or summer. You will not be disappointed by the amount of activities available for everyone in the family.
Carissa enjoys traveling so much that she left the corporate world to work as a freelancer, which allows her to up and go on a regular basis. She lives with her dachshund, Daphne in central Florida.
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